Zibaldones and the Dayton Art Institute

Dr. Laura Hume’s Renaissance & Reformation Europe integrates an experiential learning activity at the Dayton Art Institute. There, Dr. Roger Crum will give a talk about the Renaissance artwork there, relating it to the course themes of the Renaissance focus on self-awareness, self-consciousness, of discerning purpose and calling. This activity will be tied to subsequent reflection assignments in students' zibaldones. For this particular activity, reflection on vocation is the central outcome -- the identification of one's gifts, talents, or skills, engaging in the act of becoming self-conscious, exploring how to connect what one feels inside with the practicalities of the outside world.  

The funds will be used to hire First Student Charter Bus Service to take 35 students and two faculty to the Dayton Art Institute and back and to give Dr. Roger Crum an honorarium for his talk. Students will explore the question of what it means to be human through both the surface realism and psychological exploration of the Renaissance artists as they learn from Dr. Crum about the rise of artistic individuality, virtuosity, and even celebrity. Students will reflect on vocation in the context of the artists of the late Middle Ages and Renaissance who struggled against tradition and convention to express themselves with their unique talents, skills, and gifts.

By reflecting on the artwork at the Dayton Art Institute from the era when  Europeans looked both within and beyond themselves in a process of conscious self-transformation, students will also engage both within and beyond themselves -- with help from assignments. Through the entire course students will be keeping zibaldones. Zibaldones dated back to fourteenth-century Italy and were part journals, doodle books, scrapbooks, and diaries. Today in our digital world, we’d likely call them blogs. Students will be asked to keep these books and write and draw in them frequently, if not every day, and will be reminded with reflection prompts and reflections that connect to specific ideas and themes. A targeted prompt will connect the artwork seen, the historical context, and the students' undergraduate careers and vocational development. The Zibaldones will document and assess students’ progress on the proposed learning outcomes.


Name & Title

Laura Hunt Hume

Associate Professor; Director of Prelaw Program


Email: Laura Hunt Hume

Phone: 937-229-4229

Full-Time Faculty
College of Arts and Sciences: History

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Office of Experiential Learning

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